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Gol Aqa (Flower Man) is not only Iran's most popular satirical magazine but it also claims to have the highest circulation among all the country's 400-plus periodicals. With the exception of members of the clergy, it pokes fun at senior government officials as well as political, social and economic ills.

The six-year-old weekly, edited by kiyoumars Saberi, has been threatened with closure more than once. Saberi is a veteran satirist who in the 1960's worked for Tofiq (Success), a popular satirical magazine under the shah.

Here are sample cartoons from Gol Aqa with Persian text and English translations. (Note: A common Iranian is usually referred to as Asib Pazir or "vulnerable" because he or she is vulnerable to inflationary pressures.)

Segregated bus seats
Minister of Islamic Guidance
Civil Servant
Foreign loans
Border patrol
Piano-playing wife
Taxi fare
Tuition increase
Men & women
Rejected classical poets


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